10 Ways to Cope With Anxiety

Updated: 7 days ago

A woman with anxiety that sits with her head in her hands needs to learn how to cope with anxiety

Anxiety is very prevalent, and the symptoms can be debilitating. Learning how to cope with anxiety can vastly improve your quality of life.

Key takeaways:

  • Anxiety is one of the most common mental health disorders.

  • Feeling anxious is a normal response to stressful situations.

  • Anxiety is considered a disorder when you have excessive feelings of fear, anxiety, or panic that can interfere with your daily functioning.

  • Anxiety can cause emotional, physical, and cognitive symptoms.

  • There are many coping skills and lifestyle changes for managing anxiety.

  • Therapy can help a lot.

The most common mental health disorders in the U.S. (and the world) are anxiety disorders. It’s estimated that anxiety disorders affect nearly 30% of adults at some point in their lives. Over 40 million adults in the United States are living with anxiety disorders. Anxiety can be debilitating and can even cause physical symptoms.

What is anxiety?

Anxiety is feelings of fear or worry. These feelings can impact your mental, physical, and emotional health. Feeling anxious on occasion is a normal and natural response to a stressful situation. But, for people with an anxiety disorder, excessive worry, fear, and even panic are felt regularly.

It can impact your quality of life, and even prevent you from functioning normally. This is when anxiety becomes a disorder.

Multiple conditions can be considered “anxiety.” Here are some of them:

  • Generalized anxiety disorder

  • Social anxiety disorder

  • Separation anxiety disorder

  • Panic disorders

  • Phobias

  • Agoraphobia

These disorders have many commonalities. If you think you have an anxiety disorder, you should always seek a diagnosis from a professional, and never try to diagnose yourself.

Symptoms of anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorder can have many different symptoms. Different people may experience them in different ways. Here are some of the more common symptoms:

  • Feeling helpless

  • Feelings of fear

  • Feeling nervous

  • Increased heart rate

  • Sweating

  • Shaking

  • Feeling a sense of impending doom or danger

  • Fast, shallow breathing (hyperventilation)

  • Chest tightness

  • Fixation or obsessively thinking about a trigger

  • Feeling short of breath

  • An impact on physical health, such as digestive issues, chronic pain, or headaches

These feelings can be difficult to control and may even result in you beginning to avoid social situations or other trigger-inducing situations. Learning how to cope with anxiety can be a big help.

Ways to manage anxiety

Learning coping skills can help you manage your emotions and anxious feeling